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Old 04-19-2016, 09:44 PM   #11
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If you don't keep up with laminate it gets oxidized and dull and chalky after a few years. I have aluminum and my last one was and it was easy to take care of.
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Old 04-19-2016, 11:01 PM   #12
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We needed to buy our TV & TT within the same year, so our TT budget was only around $20K... We could buy a new aluminum sided/wood framed TT or a mildly used laminate sided/aluminum framed TT. After a TON of research & spending a lot of hours looking at new & used TTs we bought the higher quality used unit. I spent 2 hours looking-it over before making an offer & then the dealer provided a 2.5 hour PDI in which they adjusted slides, awning, etc. and gave me a new battery, CO2 detector, full propane, "free" WDH & installation, etc....

Our TT has the lightweight/strong welded aluminum framing covered by laminate. All RVs have fit & finish issues but the aluminum welds (I can see) look solid. In comparison, I have seen stick & tin TTs with airspace between the wooden frame members, sloppy cuts, etc. I wouldn't build a dog house to such sloppy standards...

Ours has 2 slide-outs, outdoor kitchen, etc. yet weighs under 6,500 empty w/empty tongue of 640. Stick & tin units with the exact same floorplan were around 8,000 empty with empty hitch weights around 900... Our entry-level 3/4 ton has a payload of 3,000 but we can only tow around 8,500 or we go over our GCVW (combined TV & TT weight). Choosing a stick & tin would have meant giving-up the kid's slide-out bedroom & outdoor kitchen - features we LOVE now that we have them!

Since our TT was over 2 years-old & showed no signs of delamination, water penetration, or other major issues I figured it came off the line well-built. IMO it was built just after the recession by the (better) employees who retained their jobs in a slow market. In comparison, IMO, the recent RV boom has lead to more Q&C issues throughout the industry... We camped for 2 years without any serious issues whereas friends who bought new have had nothing but issues with their RVs... I wax our TT & apply protectant to the decals just 1X per year & it still looks great.

We are paying it off faster, but with no money down our min. payments are only $180/mo. Even if we paid the minimum we would not be underwater - the TT has always been worth more than we owe. This cannot be said if you buy new & only make the minimum...
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Old 04-20-2016, 08:44 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KyDustBunny View Post

Dustman - your point about AL being covered by insurance is an EXCELLENT point I never considered. Would delamination be covered under the mfr's warranty (if it happened during the warranty period)?
Most come with a 1 year warranty and would be covered. With that being said, there are usually clauses that seals and seams must be inspected- every 6 months, I'm thinking- so it's possible they could get out of coverage if you couldn't prove they had been inspected. The majority of delam I've seen seems to start around year 3 and become progressively more common as campers age. My belief is this is primarily due to lack of maintenance on seals and seams.
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Old 04-20-2016, 08:54 AM   #14
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Water intrusion will damage/destroy any RV regardless of the construction. My father-in laws Class C had a leak in the roof that didn't show up from the inside for a long time. After finding it, the wood frame was rotted away and many $$ was required to correct the issue. Buy what you want/like and keep the water out, you'll be just fine with either!
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Old 04-20-2016, 08:58 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by RSchleder View Post
Water intrusion will damage/destroy any RV regardless of the construction. My father-in laws Class C had a leak in the roof that didn't show up from the inside for a long time. After finding it, the wood frame was rotted away and many $$ was required to correct the issue. Buy what you want/like and keep the water out, you'll be just fine with either!
That's true. Water will damage either. There is a MAJOR difference in who is able to repair AL versus FG and how much it will cost, though.
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Old 04-22-2016, 08:41 AM   #16
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Well this is a new question, as most folks who have been around camping for some time normally have a "laminate" walled coach.
So history the Aluminium walled coaches have been around from the beginning, and are considered in the industry as "Stick and tin" meaning wood framed with siding, today most coaches that have Laminate siding are built with aluminum studs (not wood (sticks)) and then the laminate sides, more yes there is still a big difference from company to company, and model to model, so only the two of you can make the final choice.
So i hope this very quick history lesson helps, And Happy Camping in your future.
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Old 04-22-2016, 09:07 AM   #17
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There is another option besides aluminum or laminate, itís the hung wall construction of the Cedar Creek and the less expensive Cedar Creek Silverback. This may not be the cheapest way to go it does provide quality construction which is especially important if you plan to be on the road rather than just camping.
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Old 04-25-2016, 07:26 PM   #18
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I have only owned a trailer for 1 year but I have hauled rv's for 11 years. After experiences I've had we chose aluminum. Hail damage on aluminum is very noticeable but laminate is susceptible to hail damage also, and the little spider cracks are very hard to see. The manufacturer will tell you that laminate cannot be repaired, it must be replaced. It's possible to repair to make look good but the spider cracks will continue. I had an incident where a trailer I had in storage got touched by another trailer. Damage was about the size of a golf ball and the repair was $4800. Had it been aluminum the repair would have been around $300.
We actually purchased a trailer that had minor hail damage and we got a super deal. But yes, laminate does look nice!
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